SALT LAKE CITY – After concluding their first homestand of the season with a commanding victory, the University of Utah women’s soccer team is going back on the road for a fixture against the Cal State Fullerton Titans, which is scheduled for Sunday at 1 p.m. PT (2 p.m. MT) at Titan Stadium in Fullerton, Calif.
Date | Time: Sunday, Sept. 3 | 2:00 p.m.
Cal St. Fullerton (0-3-1) vs. Utah (3-1-1)
Location: Fullerton, Calif. | Titan Stadium
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Twitter Updates: @UtahWSoccer
Scouting Cal State Fullerton
The Titans are still looking for their first victory of 2023, having logged a pair of ties sandwiched around three straight defeats. The good news for coach Demian Brown’s bunch is their tie with Southern Utah on Aug. 31 started a stretch in which they’ll play six of eight matches at home, where they suffered only two defeats in all of 2022.
One year after finishing tied for second on the squad in points with eight points, Kaylin Raibon has been responsible for two the Titans’ three scores in 2023, including the game tying goal in CSF’s draw with Southern Oregon on Aug. 31. In goal, the squad’s 2022 starter, Mia Ranson has been the starter in net for four of five matches, starting with a season-opening clean sheet against Boston College. Ranson will be attempting to repeat the performance she put on against the Utes a year ago, when she collected six saves in a 1-0 triumph for the Titans.
All Time Against Cal State Fullerton
Sunday’s showdown will be the ninth time these program’s have met and their first matchup in Fullerton since 2017. The Utes came out on top in that matchup, earning a 2-1 overtime victory and Utah is 2-0-2 against the Titans in Fullerton. CSF has triumphed the last two times these squads locked horns in Salt Lake City, including a victory in 2022.
Last Time Against Cal State Fullerton
Only a last-second score by CSF’s Madison Kline prevented the Utes and Titans from battling to a scoreless draw in 2022. Utah ended the evening with a 16-7 edge in shots and one more on-target effort than their guests, but the Utes couldn’t find a way to get on the scoreboard. Katie O’Kane and Taliana Kaufusi led the team with three shots each while Evelyn Vitali made four saves in goal.
Bullock’s Early Breakthrough
Kelly Bullock put the Utes on the board in the third minute in what became a 5-0 trouncing of Utah Valley on Aug. 30. Bullock’s score at the 2:21 mark goes down as the program’s earliest goal since Natalie Vukic’s tally 40 seconds into a match against Utah State in 2017.
First Half Fireworks
Utah’s attack was also responsible for three first period tallies in their rout of the Wolverines. Utah’s three first half scores represented their highest total in the opening 45 minutes since they scored four times in the first half against North Dakota State on Aug. 27, 2017.
A New Career-High for Kasey
Kasey Wardle recorded her second clean sheet of the season by making seven saves against UVU. That represented a new career-high for the sophomore keeper, besting her previous mark of five, set in 2022 against Arizona State.
Back Line Brilliance
The Utes have allowed only two goals through three matches, the fewest goals they’ve allowed since they also held their first opponents to only two scores in 2014. That season was also the last time the Utes recorded three clean sheets in their first five contests.
Ring the Bella
Bella Woods tallied Utah’s first goal of the season in the team’s Aug. 17 meeting with N.C. State. That made her the first Utah freshman to register the program’s season-opener score since Erin Dalley in 2007. Woods also picked up an assist in the Utes’ win over College of Charleston.
NCAA Tournament History
The Utes are aiming to reach the NCAA Tournament for the ninth time in school history and the first time since 2019. Utah put together its best postseason finish in 2016, when they forged a path all the way to the Sweet 16.
By The Numbers
The list of players back in the fold for Hideki Nakada‘s club includes just about all of the team’s statistical leaders from 2022. Taliana Kaufusi, who piled up a team-high six goals, is back for her senior campaign, while assist leader Ryann Cull has returned after collecting four helpers a season ago. Kaufusi also led the squad in shots in 2022 with 41, followed by fellow returners Katie O’Kane, who racked up 28, and Courtney Brown, who posted 26.
In goal, all four of Utah’s keepers, Evelyn Vitali, Kasey Wardle, Megan Quiggle and Taylor Prigge, are back for another season. No one on the roster collected more saves than Vitali’s 48 in 2022, while Wardle crafted a 0.70 goals against average. Utah’s keepers combined to record seven shutouts a season ago.
Utah’s six-person senior class is comprised of Courtney Brown, Brooke Hale, Katie O’Kane, Taliana Kaufusi, Megan Quiggle and Ragan Vanschalkwyk. This group has combined to take the field in over 200 matches for the Utes and Brown is the one player remaining from the 2019 squad that reached the NCAA Tournament.
Utah’s 2023 roster includes seven new faces and that list of newcomers is comprised of freshmen Kennedy Schoennauer, Lilliah Blum, Bella Woods, Rylan Park, Mia Becarevic and Izzy Smith and sophomore transfer Alex Schoenstadt.
Woods, Becarevic and Smith were all part of an Alta High School squad that made a run to the state playoffs in 2022, while Schoennauer helped her squad reach capture the CCA Division II Championship, Blum was named her conference’s player of the year and Park was an all-league selection.
Schoenstadt played her freshman season with Ole Miss and helped the Rebels achieve a winning record, as well as record nine clean sheets.
Scanning the Schedule
The Utes started the season on the road for the third time in the last four campaigns and their road clashes with the Wolfpack and Cougars will be followed by a visit to Utah State. The Utes will begin their home slate on Aug. 27, when they host the Clemson Tigers at 1 p.m. Utah will be at home nine times in 2023, including their Pac-12 opener against USC on Sept. 22 and a closing-day matchup with Colorado on Nov. 3.
Pac-12 Preseason Coaches Poll
The Pac-12 released its preseason coaches poll on Aug. 14 and the UCLA Bruins garnered nine first place votes and landed in the top spot in the poll. The Utes were ranked 10th.
2023 Season Tickets
Season tickets for the 2023 season are now available. Fans can purchase season tickets for $35.00 by calling the Utah ticket office at 801-581-UTIX or visit www.utahtickets.com. Utah soccer team scarfs available as a $10.00 add-on.
The Utes return home on Sept. 9, when they’ll be matched against the BYU Cougars in a contest that will begin at 7 p.m. MT.
FOLLOW THE UTES!
Fans can follow along on social media (Twitter: @UtahWSoccer | Instagram: @UtahWSoccer | Facebook: Facebook.com/Utahwsoccer).
University of Utah Athletics utahutes.com
2023-09-01 21:10:54 , "Colorado City Arizona" – Vivrr Local